As a stay at home mom, one of the things I find myself constantly pondering is where does the time go? I often feel the need to justify to others what exactly I did all day. I had a bit of an epiphany this week when I came to the realization that right now I spend six to eight hours a day feeding my children. This is not an exaggeration. I’m not even counting the time spent preparing meals. This is simply the amount of time I spend each and every day feeding them.
First the baby nurses about 8 times a day. And she’s in no hurry. Sometimes she takes ten minutes, but more often she takes forty minutes or more. I think half an hour per feeding would be a reasonable low end estimate. So there’s four hours out of my day. Now, I’m not complaining. I enjoy nursing. It’s a quiet cuddly time when no demands are made on me. But it does account for upwards of four hours out of my day/night.
Then the preschooler eats like a snail, and will only eat if I am watching her. If I get up and try and leave her alone at the dining table she will either whine and say “But I get lonesome!”, or claim that she’s full and she’s done, no matter how little she’s eaten. Therefore I’m often trapped at the dining room table watching her eat. She normally takes forty-five minutes to an hour to eat each meal. Hell sometimes it’s more like an hour and a half. I know I’m lucky in that she’s not really a picky eater, but holy cow is she ever s-l-o-w.
Then there’s the fact that the baby now eats solids. I am still somewhat in disbelief that it can take forty-five minutes to get one ice cube’s worth of food into her tummy. If I’m lucky it works out that she’s in the highchair and eating at the same time as her sister, but for various reasons it doesn’t always work that way.
Add it up and that’s six to eight hours out of my day accounted for, and to be honest I think that’s a low-ball estimate. If I add in the time I spend cooking, not to mention getting snacks and filling sippy cups, it’s probably more like eight to ten hours out of each day. If before I had kids someone had told me I would spend that kind of time just feeding my children I would have thought they were crazy.
So how’s that measure up to what goes on at your place? Or have you found any other surprises as to what you spend your mommy time on?